Lead Test

Mayor de Blasio this week proposed lowering the allowable lead in paint to .5 micrograms per square centimeter, half the current level and below levels at which testing equipment is currently certified for accuracy. The City Council is also looking at a package of lead rule changes and is reportedly planning to act at its February 13th meeting.
 
The definition of “universal rent control” has been unclear throughout the campaign season, but new State Senator Julia Salazar introduced her proposal, Wednesday, providing that owners statewide cannot terminate tenancies except for just cause; must offer 1-4 year renewal leases at the tenant’s option; and establishing a rebuttable presumption that rent increases exceeding the local consumer price index by 50% are unconscionable.
 
Also, Wednesday, the Citizens Budget Commission issued a report warning that efforts to end high rent/high income decontrol and limit capital improvement increases would be a gift to 28,000 rent stabilized households with incomes over $200,000 and would hurt housing quality.
 
HUD Secretary Ben Carson, Thursday, announced that HUD and the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District would appoint a monitor for the New York City Housing Authority and require the City to appoint a new NYCHA chairperson that they approve. The agreement with the City sets lengthy timelines for correcting lead, heat and mold issues and doesn’t provide any additional federal funds.
 
The Division of Housing and Community Renewal has announced 2019 fuel adjustments for rent controlled units. All fuels cost more except for Con Edison electricity. As of Thursday, the online filing system hadn’t been updated, but the forms should be here soon.
 
The New York City Council has raised the threshold for when an income-producing property is required to provide a certified statement of income and expense in order to receive an assessment reduction by the Tax Commission from an assessed value of $1 million to an assessed value of $5 million.
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